Letter to the Editor

Family thanks high school

Sunday, June 14, 2009

To the Editor:

Our family would like to take this opportunity to thank Northview High School and the Class of 2009.

On the evening of May 29, we attended the graduation ceremony for our daughter and sister, Brandee Nicole Siples. Friday night's graduation was bittersweet as we watched Brandee's class remember her.

We were deeply touched as Ali Rentschler called for a moment of silence in honor of Brandee as well as classmate Justin Snow. There is no doubt in our minds that Brandee marched in with the Class of 2009. We believe her presence was felt by many that night.

The feelings we had as we walked across the stage to accept Brandee's diploma are something that we cannot describe to anyone.

We especially want to thank everyone for their cards, prayers, phone calls and visits. Brandee has some amazing friends -- a lot of you we have known since elementary school. Thank you to those seniors who wore your "Brandee Bracelet" at graduation as well as those of you who had tributes on your caps. There were also many of you who took the time that evening to stop and give us a hug and just let us know that you were praying for us. That means more to us than you know.

A very special thank you goes to Brandee's favorite teacher, Joanna Connors. Your card arrived just when we needed it most Friday morning. Brandee loved you so much and it was truly a privilege for her each and every time she sat in your classroom. Thank you also for those of you who so graciously invited us to be guests at your open house.

The Class of 2009 has had to learn a tough lesson about life and loss. Brandee was killed tragically in a car crash Nov. 17, 2007. It happened so suddenly and we didn't know that day would be her last. We would not with the last 18-plus months on any other family. But if it slows one young (or old) person down, then it will spare someone else the heartache and the many tears we continue to cry daily.

Our hope and prayer is that everyone will remember what Brandee stood for and just what a wonderful person she was and how she made everybody feel. Brandee always had a smile on her face and she enjoyed every day! Brandee is perfect now in Heaven. We look forward to seeing her again soon.

Thank oyu again to the Class of 2009 for including us at graduation. Remember, you can do anything and everything you put your mind to. We are proud of you and so is Brandee.

God Bless,

Terry, Pam and Brett Siples,